Could L-Serine be a Brain Health Game Changer?
Vitamins & Supplements
Could L-Serine be a Brain Health Game Changer?
Lindsey Toth, MS, RD • February 12, 2019

Why all the buzz about L-serine? Word is beginning to spread about some of the research surrounding L-serine and its many benefits. Although L-serine was originally discovered back in 1865, emerging research shows L-serine may play a crucial role in supporting healthy neurological function as we age.1

How L-Serine Works & L-Serine Benefits

L-serine is an amino acid found in many proteins. Serine is considered non-essential because if adequate amounts are not achieved through the diet, L-serine can be made in the body from glycine.

Its benefits throughout the human body are many and wide-ranging, but it’s known to play an especially important role in helping promote and maintain neurological health as well as protein fatty acid synthesis, RNA and DNA methylation, nervous system function, muscle growth, healthy metabolism, cell proliferation and much more.1

What the Latest Research on L-Serine Says

Emerging research on L-serine suggests that there are potential new and exciting applications for L-serine. A recent article in Fortune profiled research led by ethnobotanist Paul Cox, who studies the way indigenous people use plants in their customs and diet. With his researchers at his nonprofit Brain Chemistry Labs, Cox is studying how the amino acid L-serine may be neuroprotective and play an important role in nervous system health.2 Research is still ongoing, and recent findings are showing a need for more studies on the effect L-serine in the diet may have for the body and nervous system function.

How to Get L-Serine & Good Sources of L-Serine

Many foods contain L-serine, and some foods have higher concentrations. High-protein foods, including eggs, milk, cheese, a wide variety of seeds, pork, beef, chicken, fish and some spices, provide the highest concentration of L-serine in foods.

L-Serine Content in Foods3
(per 100 grams)

1. Egg, white, dried, stabilized, glucose reduced


2. Soy protein isolate


3. Seaweed, spirulina, dried


4. Gelatins, dry powder, unsweetened


5. Fish, cod, Atlantic, dried and salted


6. Parmesan cheese, shredded


7. Soybeans, mature seeds, raw


8. Tofu, dried-frozen (koyadofu)


9. Milk, dry, nonfat, regular, no added vitamin A/D


10. Hemp seeds, hulled


11. Pumpkin and squash seed kernels, dried


12. Beef, top round roast, boneless, cooked, roasted


13. Peanut butter, smooth style, with salt


14. Chicken, broilers or fryers, giblets, cooked, fried


15. Lima beans, large, mature seeds, raw


16. Mozzarella cheese, part skim milk


17. Cheddar cheese, sharp, sliced


18. Cereals ready-to-eat, wheat germ, toasted, plain


19. Pork, cured, bacon, cooked, baked


20. Mozzarella cheese, low moisture, part-skim


21. Pistachio nuts, dry roasted


22. Egg, yolk, raw, fresh


23. Lamb, cooked, braised


24. Pistachio nuts, raw


25. Kidney beans, all types, mature seeds, raw


26. Chicken, drumstick, rotisserie, cooked


27. Peanuts, all types, raw


28. Turkey, breast, meat only, cooked, roasted


L-Serine Supplements

L-serine supplements can provide high concentrations of L-serine to help increase daily intake levels. Swanson AjiPure® L-Serine contains 500 mg of high-purity, USP-grade AjiPure® L-Serine per each veggie capsule serving. This pharmaceutical-grade L-serine is produced in a fermentation process by the amino experts at Japan's Ajinomoto, Amino Science LLC, the world leader in pharmaceutical-grade amino acids.

For more ways to support brain and mood health, read Nourish Your Noggin: 13 Best Foods for Brain Health.

Also, sign up for Swanson Health Emails to stay tuned for more expert health and wellness tips.

Lindsey Bristol, Swanson Health Products

About Lindsey Toth, MS, RD
Registered Dietitian, Swanson Health Products

Lindsey is a nationally recognized registered dietitian and nutritionist with a soft spot for pie. She empowers people to take charge of their health by finding the balance between the pleasure and nourishment in food.

Her philosophy is that you should take care of your body because it’s the only permanent home you have. It’s what inspired her to pursue a career in nutrition and, ultimately, led her to Swanson Health.


1 Tom J. de Koning, et al. L-Serine in Disease and Development. Biochem. J. (2003) 371, 653–661: (Accessed 1/30/19).

2 Rick Tetzeli. Could This Radical New Approach to Alzheimer’s Lead to a Breakthrough? Fortune. (2019). (Accessed 1/30/19)

3 United States Department of Agriculture. USDA Food Composition Databases. (Accessed 1/30/19)

*These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. These products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.